Coronavirus panic sees markets resume steep sell-off

Global markets have resumed their coronavirus sell-off as panic over the unstoppable spread of the outbreak sent stocks tumbling into the red.

The FTSE 100 Index plunged more than 200 points lower – down around 3.3% – after an older patient became the first person in the UK to die after being diagnosed with coronavirus.

It was also a sea of red across Europe as the Cac 40 tumbled nearly 4% and Germany Dax was 3.5% lower, which followed heavy overnight stock market falls on Wall Street in America and across Asia.

The falls follow a 110-point drop on the top-flight share index in London on Thursday, which brought to a halt a three-day bounceback among UK equities as officials said Britain is edging towards a widescale coronavirus outbreak.

Connor Campbell, financial analyst at Spreadex, said: “With no signs of the outbreak slowing down… investors remain gripped with a near unshakeable panic, the week’s various central bank rate cuts only serving to reinforce the seriousness of the situation.”

Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, added that investors are fretting about the possibility of a global recession caused by coronavirus.

He said: “Non-stop news headlines about the spread of coronavirus has caused investors to be very concerned about a global recession.

“This tension is likely to remain front and centre until we get some evidence that the virus can be contained.”